BOSTON – New England companies attracted $975.5 million in venture capital in the first quarter, 29 percent more than the preceding quarter’s investment total, according to the New England MoneyTree Report released today by PricewaterhouseCoopers and the National Venture Capital Association.
The average investment size increased to $10.3 million in the first quarter, the report said, as the number of deals decreased to 95, 11 percent fewer than in the fourth quarter of 2006.
Biotechnology firms captured $309.9 million or 32 percent of all venture-capital investments in the region, and five of the quarter’s top 10 deals, in the sector’s biggest haul since the third quarter of 2003. The quarter saw 17 biotech deals, averaging $18.2 million apiece; their larger size is “reflective of the substantial investment biotechnology-based products often need to go through the FDA’s regulatory review process,” the report said.
Also attracting more investment than in the preceding quarter were the software, medical devices and equipment, and media and entertainment sectors. Health industries, which includes biotechnology, medical devices and equipment, and the health care services sector, attracted 42 percent of New England venture capital deals in the first quarter.
Nationwide, the quarter saw 778 deals involving $7.1 billion in venture capital investment, the highest total since the fourth quarter of 2001.
California’s Silicon Valley led the nation with 244 deals and $2.2 billion, or 31 percent of the national totals, while New England was second in both categories with 12 percent of deals and 14 percent of venture capital.
The MoneyTree Report is issued by PricewaterhouseCoopers and the National Venture Capital Association based on survey data from Thomson Financial.